Tag: 1990s

March 1, 2024

Song of the Day: Chryztyne - For You

While German metal band Chryztyne may have formed in 1990, their sound is pure 80s! Traditional heavy metal with touches of glam/melodic metal abound in their material. The band formed in Karlsruhe in SW Germany in 1990, and released a 5-song demo cassette in 1992. Shortly thereafter, they signed with Pila Music, one of the larger Christian music labels from their home country. Their one and only full-length Tales of Paradise released in 1993 on the label, and featured 11 tracks of pure 80s metal. This, of course, proves the rule that although heavy metal had gone by the wayside–in the wake of grunge and alternative rock–in the United States, it was alive and well in other parts of the world, particularly in Europe.… Continued →

February 23, 2024

Song of the Day: Caustic Eminence - Corporate Christianity

Caustic Eminence was a raw, fast, hardcore punk band from Marion, IN. The band formed when they met as students at Indiana Wesleyan University. They released 2 demo cassettes before issuing the fabulous Another Day, Another Dollar 7″ through Cling Recordings in 1996. Not much else is known about the band other than their recorded output. Their take on punk was fast and furious, raw and lo-fi, contrary to the gamut of pop-punk bands that were popular at the time, which were moving towards more sophisticated sounds and production techniques.… Continued →

February 9, 2024

Song of the Day: Windy Lyre - Drink

Blonde bombshell Windy Lyre appeared seemingly out of nowhere in 1991 with her self-titled debut on Blonde Vinyl Records. Truth be told her connections to alternative Christian music ran deep, but on a personal level, which is not appropriate to go into here. The album was a refreshing display of acoustic alternative, which hinted at folk rock, jangle pop, and in a way preceded the dream pop/alt country craze that swept the middle part of the 1990s and beyond. Lyrics and music were all written by label owner Michael Knott (LSU, Lifesavers, Aunt Bettys, etc.)… Continued →

January 12, 2024

Song of the Day: Tonio K. - Without Love

Tonio K. was one of those hard-to-classify artists. He employed elements of rock, alternative, new wave, singer-songwriter, and more. He was too alternative for the mainstream, but not quite weird enough for indie rock. Let’s just call it rock and roll, shall we? Born in Southern California, the son of Armenian immigrants (born Steven Krikorian), K began his career with garage rock band The Raik’s Progress (who opened for Buffalo Springfield), then played a stint with Buddy Holly’s band the Crickets, but he got his first real break with a publishing deal for Intersong.… Continued →

January 5, 2024

Song of the Day: Rhythm Saints - L.A. Story (Hundred Thousand Lights)

While the alternative rock revolution was exploding all over the 90s, another musical genre was becoming ever more expansive in the same decade–electronica. Faith-based artists were pursuing new subgenres from house to techno/rave to EBM and lots of other styles. One pioneering artist in the house genre was Rhythm Saints, comprised of husband Stephen Nixon and wife Lee-Jane Nixon. Although Stephen was British born, the couple were based in Los Angeles, whence their inspiration for this track emerges. While most of the album channeled house and progressive house sounds, this track (incidentally the only one I could find from their debut via YouTube) dabbles pleasantly in ambient as well.… Continued →

December 29, 2023

Song of the Day: Unashamed - Never Ends

This band from Southern California was one of the first wave of bands who set the foundation for what was known as “Spirit-filled hardcore.” A wave which also included Focused, Strongarm, Six Feet Deep and a handful of others, many of which remained unsigned. The scene was characterized by ‘new school’ or ‘chugga chugga’ or metallic hardcore of the early to mid-90s, combined with lyrics that were bold and unapologetic about faith issues. The first time I heard Unashamed was actually a live show as they were the opening band at the first Tooth and Nail Weekend in 1994, a mini-fest at the Where-House in Bartlesville, OK featuring all Tooth and Nail bands (also on the bill were Focused, Chatterbox, Plankeye, Starflyer 59 and Wish for Eden who sadly had to cancel due to a broken down van).… Continued →

December 1, 2023

Song of the Day: Poor Old Lu - All Pretty for the TV

Poor Old Lu are/were one of the most celebrated alternative rock bands in the Christian scene. They hit at the height of the Christian indie scene in the 1990s, and formed a core unit of alternative rock bands that included The Prayer Chain, Plankeye, Starflyer 59 and a handful of others. Hailing from the Seattle area, the band also had close ties with others in the scene like Pedro the Lion, Damien Jurado, Blenderhead, and even Sunny Day Real Estate (vocalist Jeremy Enigk provided guest vocals on one POL track).… Continued →

November 17, 2023

Song of the Day: Cast in Stone - You Can't Hold Me Back

Cast in Stone was a hardcore band from California, who recorded their first cassette demo in 1998. Their early material was that old school meets new school subgenre sometimes called “tough guy hardcore.” It’s no surprise then that some of the members also did stints in Sleeping Giant, xDEATHSTARx, mainstream Bleeding Through, Point of Recognition and hardcore supergroup Dodgin’ Bullets. They recorded an EP for indie Warfare Records in 2000, a 3-way split release with Point of Recognition and Torn in Two for Facedown in 2001, and then a final cassette demo in 2001.… Continued →

November 10, 2023

Song of the Day: M.C.R.G. - The Lord's House

Early Christian rap is a thing of beauty. Similarly to mainstream rap, early examples–though they give insight to the development of the genre–often suffer from simplistic lyrics, weak production, and/or rapping styles that are now outdated and sound lazy by today’s standards. However, we must remember that the genre took decades to develop. In fact, the early 90s were a tough era for the style. It had started to become mainstream and risked disappearing into a subgenre of pop music until it was rescued by gangsta rap and alternative rap a few years later, pushing the genre to new styles and heights, though not without controversy.… Continued →

October 27, 2023

Song of the Day: Lugsole - Out of Place

Lugsole was a noisy indie rock band from Birmingham AL with hints of post-punk and emo in their sound. Despite a significant number of releases–both independent and label-issued–they remained a fairly obscure act, whose fans were either music critics or diehard independent music aficionados. Recorded output begins in 1995 and ends in 1998, and in those four short years, they managed to release three cassette demos (two EPs and one full-length), a split 7″ with Dear Ephesus, an EP on compact disc via Daddy-O Records (who also released the first Dear Ephesus recordings), and a 3-way split CD with mainstream acts The Paper Chase and E-Class.… Continued →

October 13, 2023

Song of the Day: Mylon & Broken Heart - Again and Again (RIP Mylon)

Okay, Mylon LeFevre is a stretch for inclusion on Indie Vision Music. But hear me out. He wrote a hit song for Elvis Presley in 1964, “Without Him” for the king’s Gospel album How Great Thou Art. He was only 17 when he wrong the song (in 20 minutes according to the songwriter), and was paid $90,000 for it. He walked out with a paper bag full of cash and bought his first car, a Corvette. His connection to Gospel music came earlier, as he performed with his southern gospel singing family The LeFevres.… Continued →

September 29, 2023

Song of the Day: Steve Scott - Heaven Hears the Heart That Breaks

British-born poet/artist/performer Steve Scott has been involved in or connected with Christian alternative music since 1983, having emerged from Croydon (South London) via the Bowery (New York City) before winding up in Sacramento, CA with the Exit Records scene there (Seventy Sevens, Charlie Peacock, etc.) where his debut album Love in the Western World was produced by Steven Soles (of Alpha Band fame). His solo work was a gleefully artistic take on new wave and/or post-punk with literate lyrics that pointed to his art school upbringing.… Continued →

September 22, 2023

Song of the Day: Dance House Children - Once Upon Your Lips

Our feature today comes from two brothers who started making music in their teens, first as a new wave/post-punk band called Morella’s Forest (no, not that one), and then an immensely quirky synth-pop group called Dance House Children, before parting ways and forming two of the most legendary, creative, and prolific Chrindie groups ever–Joy Electric and Starflyer 59. Yes, we are talking about none other and Ronnie and Jason Martin. In the early 1990s an independent label emerged (technically started much earlier but with very limited distribution) called Blonde Vinyl.… Continued →

September 15, 2023

Song of the Day: Eternal Ryte - The Killer

This band had the glammy looks and the flashy hooks, but their sound was heavier than the stereotypes led us to believe. Riding the line between glam metal and traditional heavy metal/power metal, the band played loud, melodic tunes with lots and lots of riffs. Hailing from Hollywood, California, the band came by their glam tendencies honestly. But listen to the riffs on “The Killer.” You won’t hear anything that heavy from Poison or Def Leppard. The band released a pair of cassette demos in 1988 and their only full-length album World Requiem in 1990 before calling it quits, with drummer Scott Ernest joining the ranks of another famed Christian melodic metal band, Angelica.… Continued →

September 12, 2023

Wedding Party have reunited--new Album announced!

90s goth rock band Wedding Party have recently announced their re-formation. A new album is coming out this month! Pre-orders and digital downloads for the album, entitled “White Horse”, are available now. Fans can purchase at the band’s website here: https://weddingpartyofficial.com or through their official Bandcamp page here: https://weddingpartyofficial.bandcamp.com/album/white-horse Physical orders will start shipping out September 28th, 2023, limited to the USA only at this time.… Continued →

September 8, 2023

August 26, 2023

The Empty North release new single!

The Empty North is a new rock band that focuses on a sound straight out of the 1990s–grunge/alternative rock with an independent aesthetic. While the recording took place in Juneau AK, the band is comprised of members from Juneau, Portland OR, and Chicago IL. There are two tracks available for streaming now, and another will be available for streaming in a week or so. There are also split releases in the works with The Proper English, Australia-based NoiseArt Collective, and Robochill. For now, check out “Appendage Angles,” a song based on the personal testimony of founding member Justin William Price (The Proper English, ex-Cicero).… Continued →

August 18, 2023

Song of the Day: My Friend Stephanie - Flavor of the Month

I was listening to my old Live at the Strand CD recently. It’s a compilation of artists who played at the legendary Strand Theater in downtown Marietta, GA, just outside of Atlanta. It had been years since I heard the CD and only remembered a few of the tracks on there, and then this absolute banger came on! I looked through all of their albums to see which one it came from, so I could find the studio version to feature here, but I couldn’t find it.… Continued →

June 23, 2023

Song of the Day: This Train - Screen Door

One of the few rockabilly bands in the Christian rock scene, This Train was even more rare in that they focused on more traditional rockabilly sounds, as opposed to its faster, punked-up cousin psychobilly, which was better represented in our scene (The Calicoes, Ruby Joe, Prophecy, Blaster the Rocketman). I’ve always found it curious how certain subgenres really catch on in faith circles (metalcore, metallic industrial, emo), while others go largely untouched (EBM, post-rock, folk-punk, etc.) Maybe someone could analyze that and write a PhD dissertation on it!… Continued →

June 16, 2023

Song of the Day: Ambient Theology - Humanity

Ambient Theology was an (wait for it . . . ) ambient side-project from the people behind Virus and The Bubblebaby Experience. It wasn’t ambient in the Brian Eno elevator music sense–having a much more rhythmic feel to it–but it was ambient electronica nonetheless, perhaps more akin to the “ambient techno” genre. This project only released one self-titled album in 1995, although there were at least 5 other full-length albums released via the various other projects. Ambient Theology was an interesting concept. Since electronica is more often than not dominated by instrumental music (sans vocals), the ‘theology’ portion came in the form of well-written, deeply thought out devotionals.… Continued →

June 9, 2023

Song of the Day: Saint Spirit - Volt

This thrash metal band hailed from Brazil in the region of Belford Roxo, just outside of Rio de Janeiro. They were active in the mid-90s, playing a form of thrash that was occasionally influenced by related styles like death metal, groove metal, and metalcore. They broke up in the late 90s and then re-formed in 2001, and have been active on and off. This video was posted in 2017, but I’m not aware of an accompanying album to go with it. Nonetheless, the band has had at least one full-length and one EP, both on the Brazilian indie label Força Eterna Records.… Continued →

May 26, 2023

Song of the Day: Titanic - Dead Men's Bones

Titanic’s founder Bill Menchen has been active in the Christian metal scene since the 1980s, first with his band Redeemer, and later with a number of other metal-themed bands including Seventh Power, Menchen, Rev Seven, and perhaps his most well-known, Titanic. Although they formed in the 1990s, they still played traditional heavy metal without any hint of alternative, grunge, or punk, which were so prevalent in that decade. The only 90s influence in Titanic’s music was the updated sonics and production techniques, which added a lot more crunch to the guitar tones than what 80s metal was known for.… Continued →

May 12, 2023

Song of the Day: Twothirtyeight - Songs Will Write the Words

Early 2000s emo, you gotta love it! One of the best, and painfully one of the most obscure in the genre was twothirtyeight (or sometimes 238). The band hailed from Pensacola, FL in the state’s panhandle. Florida seemed to be a haven for emo and hardcore during that era, and many of those bands ended up on Birmingham, AL’s Takehold Records, and then eventually on Tooth & Nail when they bought Takehold’s roster and much of its back-catalogue. Twothirtyeight played a style of emo that minimized the hardcore influence and instead delved into a deeply emotional form of indie rock, like secular counterparts in Braid, Cursive, or Christie Front Drive.… Continued →

May 5, 2023

Song of the Day: Dodgin' Bullets - Knife To Your Heart

Since the genre first emerged in the early 1980s, hardcore (originally hardcore punk) has splintered into dozens of sub-sub-subgenres including melodic hardcore, beatdown, old school hardcore, new school/chugga chugga, d-beat, crust punk/crustcore, metalcore, emocore, and so forth. By and large my favorite artists have generally been those who kept closest to the genre’s origins, even if they took those beginnings in new directions. The old slogan (which I’ve often quoted here on this site) “loud, fast rules!” is apropos here. In the late 90s/early 00s a revival of the style emerged, sometimes referred to as “tough guy hardcore.”… Continued →

April 28, 2023

Song of the Day: Delta Haymax - Tidal Wave

Gosh, this song . . . this band . . . has a way of evoking memories of a certain period of my life. Lo-fi indie rock with only 2 members. One on guitar and vocals, and the other on drums. They released a very short–only 3 songs–but brilliant self-titled EP on Tooth & Nail in 1997. T&N had a fantastic run of EPs around that time (Pedro the Lion, Warlord, Inner Means, Training for Utopia, etc.) and this was certainly one of them. The songs were lo-fi, but not noisy.… Continued →

April 21, 2023

Song of the Day: Not for the Crowd - Gain Back Lost Youth

Not for the Crowd was one of the few Christian ska bands who didn’t go the third wave/ska-core/ska-punk fusion route, instead focusing on more traditional and/or two-tone style ska sounds. In this they shared some similarities with The Israelites, except NFTC featured faster tempos. Sadly, I don’t know anything about this band–where they were from, who the members were, or anything of the sort. I first heard of them through a few ska compilations in the late 90s, and IVM’s own “Ska Lives” series. I only recently discovered that the band had released an 8-song album in 1997 called Morningstar Radio Hour for indie label Morningstar Records.… Continued →

March 3, 2023

Song of the Day: Minier - Philosophy of Man

Greg Minier, the famed guitarist of The Crucified (and later of grunge/alternative/metal project Applehead) released a solo EP of straightforward thrash metal (the yin to The Crucified’s crossover yang), under his last name. The mini-album contained 7 songs and featured Greg playing all the instruments as well as handling the vocal duties. I remember talking with several metalheads at the time and we all agreed it was unfair for the Lord to bless some individuals with so much talent, while others of us got so little!… Continued →

February 24, 2023

Song of the Day: Seasons in the Field - Eternity

Hailing from the tri-state area of West Virginia/Pennsylvania/Ohio,this metalcore band only released one cassette demo and one split CD with emocore band Pensive. What is interesting about that split–that is, besides being a spectacular release from two very good and rather unique bands–is that both bands featured members that would soon after go on to join the more well-known Zao. Pensive featured Brett Detar and Martin Lunn, as well as other members who joined Detar’s later band The Juliana Theory. Seasons in the Field featured Russ Cogdell on guitar, and future Zao screamer Dan Weyandt.… Continued →

February 10, 2023

Song of the Day: Dr. Onionskin - FJR

Dr. Onionskin has a long and somewhat interesting history. Born Shane Ries, he had a brief career in the 80s in mod and power pop bands (a fact I only recently discovered), but first came into CCM prominence with the oddly effective project Hymn Jim’s Gospel Gems (1995), which fused traditional hymns with dance music. He re-branded a year later as Dr. Onionskin and changed styles to acid jazz, releasing the quirky, instrumental and semi-brilliant Split Pea Soup. Then in 1996 he changed styles again, though still building on jazz-electronica fusions, and emerged with Bully and oh my gosh, what a record!… Continued →

February 3, 2023

Song of the Day: 3 Car Pile-Up - Dweeb

90s alternative. People either love it or hate it. Despite the excesses of the genre, or the just plain slackness of it, I still love it. 3 Car Pile-Up was never going to win any awards for their musical contributions–unless it was maybe the high school talent show. Their one and only album is raw, somewhat sloppy, and even kind of juvenile in its approach to both music and lyrics. However, that is exactly what I love about it. If you can’t relate to the lyrics of “Dweeb” then I’m not sure you actually lived through American Christianity in the 80s/90s: When I was in grade school, my friends made fun of me They used to call me stupid names, like “Jesus Boy” or “Freak” But I knew come Sunday, that I’d be number one ‘Cuz I knew all my verses, and I would get some gum I’m a dweeb!Continued →